Driving Defensively Around Motorcycles
It’s that time of year again. The sun is shining, the birds are chirping and the sound of motorcycles whizzing by your car window echo the sound of blood rushing to your brain as you attempt to avoid getting too close to them.
Every time you see a motorcycle, you’re reminded of that fateful day last year where you came inches from plowing over a biker on 29 who was in your blind spot. Thankfully, he was able to maneuver and get ahead of you just in time, but the shock of seeing him there—and the fact that you could’ve killed him—caused you to freak out and wind up in the middle of the median, trying to catch your breath and slow down your heart palpitations.
Now, a year later, just the noise of a motorcycle is enough to raise your heart rate. Unfortunately, you can’t avoid them, so what can you do? What extra precautions should you take to decrease your risk of an accidental collision?
Motorcycle Proximity Safety Guidelines
Driving near or around motorcycles can be extremely stressful at times. Their quick and sudden movements may cause you to involuntarily jerk your vehicle. The fear that you may accidentally collide with one of them or that they may swerve into you, is enough to want to avoid them altogether. However, sometimes avoidance isn’t an option; therefore, when approaching, passing, or driving next to a motorcycle, you need to drive safely and defensively by learning these five simple guidelines:
Never pass a motorcycle on the right; it’s hard to gauge if he is planning to change lanes as it is customary for bikers to ride close to the outside of lanes.
When driving next to a motorcycle, try to keep him in your mirror at all times (unless passing) to avoid losing his position.
Keep at least two car lengths between you and the motorcycle at all times; this will leave you maneuvering room in case of any unforeseen issues.
Always double check intersections and driveways for potential motorcyclists, especially in the spring and summer; they can sometimes be hard to spot.
Never cut-off or turn in front of a motorcyclist who has the right of way, no matter how much room you think you may have; although motorcycles can maneuver quickly, they can also lose control and balance quickly if forced to abruptly change speed or course.
Motorcycle traffic and popularity quickly increase during spring and summer months. Don’t allow the presence of bikes to stress or scare you; just remember to follow the motorcycle proximity guidelines and use your good judgment to avoid any potential accident risks.
Do you want to protect your friends and family from a motorcycle accident? You can use your social media connections to keep your loved ones safe and our roads clear, by sharing this page on Facebook, Twitter, or Google+.
Need more information about motorcycle safety, rights, or injury claims? Contact us today for a free consultation. We’ll be happy to put your mind at rest and give you the answers you need.
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